Sunday, January 28, 2007


In about two hours time I'll be busy socialising at The 22nd Royal Australian Chemical Institute Organic Conference (RACIOC 22) here in Adelaide, South Australia. I'm giving an oral presentation on Wednesday at 11 am on the synthesis of cyclopropane amino acids. So if you are attending the conference come and check it out. Hopefully, I'll have loads of stuff to post from the conference to get the blog going at full steam again. Anyway, gotta go. Still haven't finished my slides and I've got one last NMR to run. D!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Science Ethics

An interesting article on patenting, falsification and plagiarism in science and science ethics in general published on

I'm not sure if this link only works if you're an ACS member. Let me know if you have any problems accessing the site. C!

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

A Dictionary of Useful Research Phrases

Happy New Year and so forth. I trust that everyone has had a stressful festive season and needs to loose a couple of kilos by now. Anyway, Curly Arrow has been a bit quiet lately. In my case the year has taken off at full speed with a conference coming up in two weeks time where I will be presenting results I still haven't obtained (sound familiar?). And that's only half of my troubles these days so I'll let the other guys be in charge for the next couple of weeks. The picture above is a PDC reaction I did recently. I am not a big fan of PDC oxidations and will not be doing one again but I really needed a picture for this post so there it is. Some years ago I saw a list attached to some academics door entitled: A Dictionary Of Useful Research Phrases. I thought it was a good laugh. Have a read and see what you think.
(1) "It has long been known..." Means: I didn't look up the original reference.
(2) "A definite trend is evident..." Means: These data are practically meaningless.
(3) "Of great theoretical and practical importance..." Means: Interesting to me.
(4) "While it has not been possible to provide definite answers to these questions..." Means: This was an unsuccessful experiment, but I still hope to get it published.
(5) "Three of the samples were chosen for detailed study." Means: The others made no sense.
(6) "Typical results are shown." Means: The best results are shown.
(7) "The most reliable results are those obtained by Jones." Means: He was my grad assistant.
(8) "It is believed that..." Means: I think.
(9) "It is generally believed that..." Means: A couple of other guys think so, too.
(10) "It is clear that much additional work will be required before a complete understanding of the phenomenon is possible." Means: I don't understand it.
(11) "Correct within an order of magnitude." Means: Wrong.
(12) "It is hoped that this study will stimulate more work in this field." Means: This is a lousy paper, but so are the others in this crummy field.
(13) "Thanks are due to Joe Blotz for assistance with the experimental work and to George Frink for valuable discussions." Means: Blotz did the work, and Frink explained to me what it meant.
(14) "A careful analysis of obtainable data..." Means: Three pages of notes were obliterated when I knocked over a glass of beer.
(15) "A statistically oriented projection of the findings..." Means: Wild guess.
(16) "A highly significant area for exploratory study..." Means: A totally useless topic suggested by my committee.
If you know some good ones not mentioned above please post them here. Cheers, D!